View Full Version : freshwater
03-19-2006, 03:11 PM
Does anyone else here dive freshwater?
03-19-2006, 03:35 PM
03-20-2006, 08:56 AM
Me too - check out my pictures at the link below
03-20-2006, 10:04 AM
Man that is awesome! I would love to dive and spear a lake that clear with that abundance of fish! Im about to nuts here waiting for the water to warm up. Sometimes we get decebt vis on lake Ouachita and DeGray, but sometimes you drop and come about a foot away from a 4foot gar cuz you couldnt see him till you got that close! Theese days I stay out of the coves with much logs and stobs. I hate dang trotlines.
03-20-2006, 11:10 AM
Spearing regs are really restrictive here. But the water is very clear year round. I've been diving all winter. My 5 mil elios suit does the job just fine. The real clincher was the Henderson Ice mask - it eliminates the intense face adjustment in 34F water - and saves alot of energy. I plan to go this weekend - there has been an intense cold snap with howling winds out of the north for the last 10 days or so - longest I've been out of the water since december - but that should be over in a few days. Hope to get some pictures of steelhead and brown trout - rumour is they are running right now.
03-20-2006, 12:05 PM
To bad you cant spear there. I guess Id take poor vis over little or no spearing anyday.
03-20-2006, 12:56 PM
I dive fresh water in Wyoming during the summers when Im back there. Ill see if I can get some pictures posted today; we shoot Walleye, Channel Catfish, Crappie, Carp, Trout, and Smallmouth Bass. The lakes can be zero to 20ft of viz just depending on time of year and location. During the rest of the year Im attending Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Ia and from what Ive seen and read theres not too many options for it here. The pictures of Lake Michigan look amazing; I hope to bring my freediving gear back in July and head up there on a weekend. If any of you folks head out west way during late June/beginning of July Id be happy to show you around or if you ever get out there shoot me a pm and Ill help guide you to a fun place.
03-20-2006, 01:03 PM
That would be amazing I think to see some big steelhead or salmon underwater... How warm does it get in LAke Michigan in the summer months? Seeing that Lake Trout on your site is a neat thing. A buddy and I dove a lake called Flamming Gorge in southwestern Wyoming/northern Utah trying to find a Lake Trout but came up empty handed. We did get some nice Smallmouth Bass that were alot of fun. On our dives we'd see them all over the place if it was rocky.
Good luck on seeing those fish.
03-20-2006, 01:43 PM
I live in Virginia and for a part of the summer you can legally spear in the rivers and lakes of West Virginia. I haven't done it yet but plan to this summer for sure.
Justin, I was out in Wyoming last September and was hoping to do some spearing. How late in the year do you spear the lakes there?
03-20-2006, 06:52 PM
Water was in the low 50s during the lake trout shots - took about a week to figure out how to get close to them. They show up around mid-october and stay through November. They hunt along the breakwall and the trick is to get down there when they are not looking, and wait for them to swing by on patrol - then, of course, avoid sudden movements etc. I would wait up in the rocks until the lead fish went by - if the school was spread out, then dive down staying close in the rocks and wait for the others. I barely saw them until I took some time to sort out what their deal was.
The two shots of live salmon were as close as I got.
The salmon just blow on by and stay on the edge of visibility if they see you first - which is pretty much 30-50 feet all summer - they would be quite challenging to spearfish for - sort of like blue water hunting. The healthy ones seem almost devoid of curiosity and just cruise fast. In July and August the water can get into the low 70s - though there are usually thermalclines that are colder - sometimes MUCH colder. We dive in 3 mil suits pretty much from june to the end of October - I've gone all winter in my 5 mil - down to 33 or 34F - no problems. winter visibility can be over 100feet - but the fish move out deep.
The breakwall is 10 minutes from my house - Lake Michigan - where most of the freshwater drum shots were taken - is about 30 minutes.
03-20-2006, 07:25 PM
Fondue, those are some excellent pics...keep up the good work. Nothing like clear, crisp underwater shots! :thumps:
03-20-2006, 07:26 PM
Very Nice Pics ALICIA!
03-20-2006, 08:31 PM
Me too, up in Alberta and Saskatchewan Canada from May to October. Different kind of hunting and challenges, very rewarding.
03-21-2006, 12:47 PM
There is a spearing season (why...as about less than 2% of the states half-million people spear) starting June and going to the end of August I believe; though it may got through September. The problem is that later in the year most of the lakes start to turn over and get horrible visibilty. Im not sure on the lakes in the far western part of the state and utah but eastern/central Wyo it gets pretty murky. There are also only certain lakes where spearing is allowed and on the Wyoming Game and Fish site it lists them all. (http://gf.state.wy.us/downloads/pdf/fish/fishregs.pdf). www.atlantisdivers.com is a Utah spearing site that has some good info and pics. Any Q's shoot me a holler. Fonduset, I have a 3mil suit that should work great; I have never been in viz more than 30ft.....100ft would be amazing.
03-21-2006, 01:26 PM
Thanks, Justin, for the info. I'd like to make it back out to WY this summer to spear some of those famed lake trout I hear about :}}
03-21-2006, 02:47 PM
I think average vis in the bay is probably 70 or so most of the winter - there were a few days that were mind-blowing though. My spot at the south end of west bay seems to be particularly clear. 3mil would be pushing it in 34f water :) though my daughter has done it briefly. the shots at the bottom of my site are all from this winter. The Wreck is in a different part of the bay and you can see the vis over there is only about 50 feet or so. Seem to be alot more nutrients in the water - near the marina that is close to that wreck it got down to 25-30 along the outer wall. Interestingly inside the marina it was extremely clear despite the bubblers.
The open waters of Lake Mich are often clearer than the bay - I haven't been out there in winter yet but it would be interesting.
03-21-2006, 03:44 PM
Those are some cool pics, fonduset. What's the viz there in the summer? Do you spear it then?
03-21-2006, 05:17 PM
The Lake Trout are in Flaming Gorge; I dove the Wyoming side which didnt seem to be quite as clear due to not being as rocky I believe. Around the dam (general area) the water looked like it could be 80ft 2 feet from the bank so maybe one could see one of those bad units cruzing the ledges. The water wasnt all too warm for my 3mm suit so a 5-6.5mm is what Id suggest. What guns do you guys use in your area of freshwater? I have a Riffe MT1 with the wing kit. The wing kit has more to do with acting like a plane when Im surface swimming the banks, it takes alot of the strain off of my wrist while swimming with the gun partially extended. It always sinks, no floating for it. I have a 5/16 shaft I use that I think is alot of overkill but never doesnt get the job done.
03-21-2006, 05:54 PM
Haven't speared freshwater yet where I am, meaning a whole state over in West Virginia (I live in Virginia). It's illegal to spear freshwater here in Virginia. For the salt along the coast here I use a Mares Cyrano setup, and that's adequate for the rocky shoreline. I'm not yet a blue water hunter, but when I get there I'll be getting another setup entirely. I do have a 5mm Diveskin suit and a 3mm hood, though.
03-21-2006, 08:00 PM
I use a 5 mil elios suit all winter. I also like the Henderson Ice mask - really takes the edge off in the 30s F range.
summer vis is 30-50 most of the time where I dive.
If Lake Trout in Wyoming are like they are here you'll probably need to aspetto them. If they are in vis range when you dive - dive away from them or with indifferent body language and minimal movement. Try to find some cover. Here they cruise a sort of regular hunting pattern during the fall and you can insert yourself along the route if your timing is good. To get the photos I had to track very steadily and avoid any correcting type movements - even if I was sort of falling over. Obviously had to be negative fairly shallow. I've seen individuals spook out from a reflection off the camera. It's cool to watch on a clear day if they spook across your visual field you can have them in sight for 50 feet or more - they really move! Sometimes you can actually here a thwopping sound as they streak by.
If the school was spread out I would wait for the first individuals to pass then edge down along the breakwall before the rest arrived. A few times they relaxed enough to circle up behind and around me.
I have an Omer Cobra and a Riffe MT0 - I'm putting a 1/4 inch shaft on the riffe so I can use few bands and have less recoil with good speed and range. Currently it seems to do an accurate 12 feet (if you brace it well!) with a 9/32 and three bands (5/8 and two 9/16) i want it to do that with two - the fish here are soft and fast. I'm looking forward to trying the lighter shaft - kind of novel for the Riffes. The 0 sinks like a rock - but is very nicely balanced.
The cobra needs no mods for these waters :) I plan to do some traveling with both guns.
03-22-2006, 10:35 AM
That's way cool. I do plan to do some freshwater spearing this summer somewhere. I'm still a novice as far as this world is concerned, but I'm fascinated with it and learning :}
I did find truth in what you said about indifferent body language as far as working the rocks along the saltwater shoreline here in VA - that if you act and show yourself as wanting to take a kill, the fish can sense the danger like any any animal. So I began to show no language and tried to send out no signals, keep my mind blank (not hard to do for me :O ), and it was much easier to approach and take a kill.
I believe my Mares has a 9/16 shaft, but I am eyeing up a Rob Allen gun for purchase this spring or summer when I get more into it.
03-22-2006, 01:37 PM
I just moved to Springfield, MO and am looking forward to learning to spear on some of the AR lakes. Any tips are appreciated.
03-22-2006, 02:24 PM
I use a Sporasub stealth 70 and my uncle shoots a stealth75 here in arkansas. I have my gun set up with a detachble float if necessary. Im not tryin to freedive and shoot a big fish and get drug off. Shoot one I cant handle unclip it track the float and dive down with my backup gun. I also have a jbl explorer 20 as my back up. And if I dive down on a really nice bass and spook it at first they will generally swim right to the edge of vis and stop, so i slowly turn the other way but stay where I can see them, They get curious and WHACK!
03-27-2006, 12:12 AM
bell47, I dove beaver lake last year. on the north side of the damn there was a cove that had some good bass hanging around some pvc structure. i was not spearing at the time, but vis was around 20 feet.
I dive oklahoma lakes when I get the chance. We can not shoot gamefish.
Mostly carp and catfish if we get lucky.
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